by Lars Bräunling, MAJOR Director of Product Technology
When coupled with routine maintenance, anticipating the needs of equipment is an important way operations can ensure screening performance and productivity. Consistently monitoring a vibrating screen with a predictive analysis program helps to not only keep it up and running, but helps to do so efficiently.
Predictive analysis is important for products like screen media. Since screen boxes and screen media are used consistently and undergo a lot of day-to-day stress, it’s important they be monitored to avoid unexpected breakdowns and maintenance. Vibration analysis is one way that producers can identify and prevent issues with their operation in real-time. During a scheduled visit, an expert can address problems, make recommendations and provide advice on an optimal screen media solution.
Along with unforeseen shutdowns and maintenance, there are three key issues that vibration analysis can help prevent.
Address improper settings
Applying the incorrect settings to a screening operation can result in lowered production capabilities and output. If an operator adjusts the machine after a certified dealer sets it up, issues can arise. Changes from the baseline operating data, such as adding more material than recommended or adjusting speeds, can cause poor performance and potential damage to the machine. Vibration analysis helps provide data to identify issues and makes it easy for a dealer to work with the operation to get things back on track.
Accurately measure changes
The data that comes from a vibration analysis delivers quantitative measurement of changes in the screens’ performance. Some sensors measure g-force, stroke, rpm and orbit, including lateral movement — a measurement that not all vibration analysis systems offer. The detailed measurements can help operators and their dealers determine whether fine-tuning of the machine is necessary.
Identify maintenance issues
While some sensors aren’t designed as vibrating screen diagnostic tools, the information they provide can help pinpoint possible problems with the equipment. Unaddressed issues, such as cracked side plates, weak or damaged screens and loose bolts, can cause increased wear and poor performance down the road. Identifying these issues early on can help prevent unexpected downtime to fix issues later.
In one example, a mining company benefited from the preventative observations found by a vibration analysis sensor. During a scheduled visit to the operation, a dealer conducted tests and noticed an anomaly on one corner of the discharge end. After confirming the anomaly with several follow-up tests, the dealer consulted with the manufacturer to see if any similar irregularities at other operations had been recorded. They had not.
A site technician took a closer look at the vibrating screen. The bearing temperature revealed that the bearing was running hot and had damaged the shaft. It was deemed that there was no risk of critical failure for both the bearing and the shaft before the next preventative maintenance day.
The team ordered replacement parts, and performed a replacement during the next scheduled maintenance shutdown. Without performing a vibration analysis this could have led to an unplanned outage, which could have resulted in extra costs for the company.
Because of the constant use and day-to-day stress that screen media undergoes, it’s important to be on the lookout for potential issues. Producers can utilize vibration analysis technology to optimize performance while increasing uptime and profits.